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03 December 2010

As it happened: Monfils d. Tipsarevic 6-1 7-6(4) 6-0


GAME WATCH

By 

  • Ed Pearson

Photo: Srdjan StevanovicGael Monfils (FRA)

GAME, SET, MATCH - FRANCE 6-1 7-6(4) 6-0

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 (4)6-7 0-6 Gael Monfils*
Monfils holds to love to give his team the first point of the 2010 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Final. An accomplished performance by Monfils there. It looked like Tipsarevic could have fought his way back into it in the second set but as soon as he went behind in the tiebreak, the writing was on the wall.


Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 (4)6-7 0-5 Gael Monfils
It's all but over in this first rubber as Monfils breaks again. He takes a 5-0 lead and the French fans are rightfully proud of their man.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 (4)6-7 0-4 Gael Monfils*
Monfils races into a 4-0 lead in this third set. Tipsarevic looks a defeated man. The crowd does its best to lift him but he has a very long way back now.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 (4)6-7 0-3 Gael Monfils
The benches say it all. The French are on their feet cheering their man while the Serbians look very deflated indeed. Monfils breaks again and thoughts turn to the next match involving Novak Djokovic and Gilles Simon. Serbia must finish today on at least level terms with the French or it could be a very long weekend.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 (4)6-7 0-2 Gael Monfils*
Monfils holds serve to love and consolidates his early break. Tipsarevic is going to have to play out of his skin if he's to get back on level terms with the Frenchman.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 (4)6-7 0-1 Gael Monfils
Tipsarevic saves a break point by winning an epic rally that leaves even the super fit Monfils blowing his cheeks. The players are slugging it out on court now and you can feel the exertion of every point. If they keep this up both will be tired for the reverse singles on Sunday, surely? Tipsarevic just can't apply the killer blow and after four game points in his favour, he finally gets broken by Monfils at the second time of asking.

 


 

SECOND SET - FRANCE 7-6(4)

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 6-7 Gael Monfils
Monfils challenges a call successfully and is awarded the very first point of the tiebreak much to the frustration of Tipsarevic. Another challenge by the Frenchman is called out and then he nets a simple volley to lose the advantage. Tipsarevic is starting to grunt and groan as he gives his all to work his way back into this match. A change of ends but no change of fortune for the Serb as another challenge goes the way of Monfils. A scintillating rally gives Monfils a 5-4 lead and he wins the next two points on Tipsarevic's serve to win the second set.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 6-6 Gael Monfils
The crowd shout his name and "Janko" replies with another solid service game. His second serve is gripping the court and kicking into Monfils's body making it difficult for the Frenchman to hit a powerful return. Tipsarevic holds to love to make it a tiebreak. The crowd are going wild.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 5-6 Gael Monfils*
Monfils hits some big first serves to force Tipsarevic to serve to stay in this second set. Both nation's fans are making huge amounts of noise, the French are jumping in the stands, the Serbs are banging drums and the atmosphere is electric.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 5-5 Gael Monfils
Some of the shots that Tipsarevic is hitting are truly unbelievable. He is energising the crowd with monstrous power and pinpoint accuracy. He takes the game and with it a slight psychological edge in this second set.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 4-5 Gael Monfils*
Haivng won a nervy point at 30-30, Monfils takles some time to blow his nose. Has he got a cold? I wish I felt as good as he looks when my nose was blocked. The Frenchman holds and there's little between the two players now.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 4-4 Gael Monfils
Tipsarevic holds to love with an assured service game.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 3-4 Gael Monfils*
The crucial seventh game of this second set is a cracker. Both players are giving everything and at 30-30 on his serve Monfils fires a forehand long to give Tipsarevic a break point. The crowd erupts. The Serb plays a great point but drops a volley agonisingly short. He then nets a forehand and Monfils holds with a delicate drop shot much to the delight of the French bench and fans. "Allez les bleus" is the chant of choice.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 3-3 Gael Monfils
Groans all round as Tipsarevic nets a simple forehand to hand Monfils the first point. At 15-30 on his own serve, the Serb fires a sweet backhand cross court winner, before Monfils hits long and Tipsarevic holds with a big serve right into the corner of the service box.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 2-3 Gael Monfils*
Monfils responds to a double fault by winning the next three points and with it the game. The select group of French fans are starting wave their flags but the home crowd is making itself heard too.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 2-2 Gael Monfils
The first point of this game goes the way of the Serb with a deft touch at the net. He is taking more time between points which seems to be helping his game. He holds to love with some clinical hitting.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 1-2 Gael Monfils*
The crowd are making more noise every time Monfils commits an error. A forehand into the net is met with a huge cheer and some banging of drums. At 30-30 Monfils double faults to hand Tipsarevic his first break point of the match. The crowd love it. But the Frenchman shouts "allez!" after finding the corner with a big forehand winner and two more first serves mean he holds.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 1-1 Gael Monfils
Tipsarevic bounces back into this match winning just his second game but he does it looking far more composed than he did in the first set. He needs to forget about that horrible opener and get himself back in this match.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-6 0-1 Gael Monfils*
Tipsarevic needs to find his range fast if he doesn't want to suffer an ignominious defeat at the hands of Monfils. The latter takes the opening game of the second set for the loss of a single point.


FIRST SET FRANCE - 6-1

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-6 Gael Monfils
Serbian captain Bogdan Obradovic is up on his feet between points urging his player on. Meanwhile Guy Forget looks the picture of cool on the French bench. You would be too if your player was playing like Gael Monfils. The Frenchman breaks for the third time to take the first set 6-1.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-5 Gael Monfils*
Monfils extends his advantage to force Tipsarevic to serve to stay in this first set. The pressure is on the Serb.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-4 Gael Monfils
Monfils wins the first point of the fifth game with another huge forehand into the corner. Tipsarevic battles back with a big winner of his own. Monfils goes 30-15 up with a clinical passing shot. The French fans are starting to make some noise, but Tipsarevic does his best to silence them with an accurate forehand. The Serb nets to give Monfils a break point, which he duly converts. Monfils with a double break.

Janko Tipsarevic 1-3 Gael Monfils*
The players are into their stride now and both are hitting the ball exceptionally hard. Monfils is looking very calm. Effortlessly quick on his feet, the Frenchman holds serve to consolidate his early break.

Janko Tipsarevic* 1-2 Gael Monfils
The crowd are doing their best to lift Tipsarevic. He responds by winning his first game of the match with some solid first serves. It's safe to say he has found some rhythm after the initial attack of nerves.

Janko Tipsarevic 0-2 Gael Monfils*
There's no doubt the players are feeling the pressure. Monfils also double faults but he steadies himself to hold his first service game despite a minor glitch at 30-30.

Janko Tipsarevic* 0-1 Gael Monfils
Tipsarevic starts with two double faults. It seems like the nerves of the big occasion are getting to him. He hits long to give Monfils three break points and the Frenchman breaks at the second opportunity with a big forehand down the line which Tipsarevic can only slice into the net.

 


 

The players are nearing the end of their knock up and the crowd is eagerly awaiting the start of this tie.

Now for the anthems: both are sung beautifully by a choir of children. Quite poignant that.

The opening ceremony is underway and you can practically feel the expectation of the home support. The players make their way onto the court. First the French, then the Serbs and, predictably, the place erupts to the name of Novak Djokovic.

 


Welcome to live updates from the Belgrade Arena. The first singles rubber of this year's Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Final is due to start at 14:00 (13:00 GMT).

 

For now the crowd is in full voice. there is a section of the stadium full of French fans, but you get the sense that the Serbian support is going to be passionate and very, very noisy today.

You'd expect nothing less from Davis Cup.

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    • Gael Monfils (FRA)Janko Tipsarevic (SRB)
    • Gael Monfils (FRA)Serbian fans
    • Gael Monfils (FRA)Janko Tipsarevic (SRB)
    • French fansGael Monfils (FRA)
    • Janko Tipsarevic (SRB)Gael Monfils (FRA)
    • Serbian bench
     
 
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